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Early Start

News/Business. John Berman, Zoraida Sambolin. The latest breaking news and trending stories. New.

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Us 32, Sandy 31, Manhattan 21, New York 21, Chris Christie 16, New Jersey 13, Bellevue 13, Hoboken 12, Romney 9, Brooklyn 9, Christie 8, John 7, U.s. 7, Rob Marciano 7, Iowa 7, United States 7, Wisconsin 6, Cnn 6, Navarro 6, John Berman 6,
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  CNN    Early Start    News/Business. John Berman, Zoraida Sambolin.  
   The latest breaking news and trending stories. New.  

    November 1, 2012
    5:00 - 7:00am EDT  

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that does it for this edition of "360." "early start" begins now. we're in shock. everybody is in shock. we never thought it would be this bad. >> there's no words to put on what happened here, but we've got to start over. >> three days since sandy and storm victims are still reeling and struggling to recover. >> five days until the election. both kaesdz on the road in the final battleground states. good morning and welcome to "early start." i'm john berman. >> and i'm zoraida sambolin. it's 5:00 a.m. in the east.
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we begin with the latest on the aftermath of the superstorm hurricane ire hurricane sandy. most buses are up and running again and they are free of charge. but most of lower manhattan still has no power and temperatures are dipping into the 30s and 40s. >> and there are no heartbreaking picture as long the jersey shore barrier islands. houses picked up, some just buried in the sand and governor chris christie who toured the destruction with president obama said some parts of the shore may never look the same again. >> the death toll reached 124 people with 56 in the united states. at least 28 in new york. and close to 5 million customers are still waiting for the power to come back on. >> cnn has the entire disaster zone covered this morning. our correspondents spanned out across lower manhattan and all up and down the jersey shore. >> first, the economic capital of our country is slowly getting
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back to normal this morning even while facing extreme damage. power outages and people having to walk for hours just to get to work. meantime, another hospital lost generator power in lower manhattan. right now hundreds of people are being pushed out of bellevue after hundreds of others were evacuated yesterday. our dr. sanjay gupta is live at bellevue but first to rob marciano. the governor says there will be no fares for subways, trains and buses but many of the bus and subway lines are still not up and running yet so how limited is transportation now? >> well, i can tell you from what we witnessed yesterday, it's very limited. for one thing the buses don't run at night, at least south of 23rd because it's too dark and dangerous. you come down here in the middle of the night and you can't see anybody or anything let alone somebody crossing the street. buses coming up from downtown,
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what we saw yesterday, by the time they got to 14th they were jammed and couldn't stop to pick up more passengers so forget about the free fares, we need more buses. the people riding underground are now transporting above ground. look at this video near the quee quee queens borough bridge in fear of being fired if they couldn't get there. that's the thing we're dealing with with the buses. subway lines, 14 of 23 will be running today but nothing south of 34th street obviously because the power is out and some of those tunnels are still flooded. all the tunnels with the exception of one out of the island are flooded so they're closed and if you're going over the bridges, all but the gw bridge -- it was absolute gridlock from people trying to get to and from with their own
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sdre vehicles. >> that lack of power you're mentioning. millions without electricity and water. what's the latest on that? >> status quo, two days into this so now another two days before this power down here is restored. so by the weekend hopefully outside of here across the eastern boroughs and up in the county could be as long as into next week. we visited some people yesterday across some of the public housing and on the west side, boy, they had it rough, not only power but no water, as well, going to fire hydrants to try to get water in five gallon bucks and lugging them up 15 flights of stairs. here's what some had to say about what's going on with them. >> this has just happened out of the blue. they shut the water down so we have no water, no light and we got to food so it's like -- it's really, really now a desperate situation. >> and to add insult to injury
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over the next couple of days, temperatures are going to drop. it's going to get colder behind sandy into the 30s for overnight lows and only 40s for daytime highs through the weekend so staying warm will be an issue too. >> this could be another looming crisis for us. rob marciano, thank you. >> one more thing to worry about. back now to the painstaking transfer of more than 700 patients out of new york's flagship public hospital bellevue hospital. evacuations going on at this moment. flooding wiped out fuel pumps in the hospital's basement which was supposed to power the generators. our chief medical correspondent dr. sanjay gupta is at bellevue and understand evacuations are still under way this morning. >> we were here to just past 11:00 and around 3:30 in the morning and you probably can't see this very well but probably 50 ambulances lined up still along the streets. so they told us the evacuations will probably take till about
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noon today working around the clock to get that done. just in terms of medical triage and this may seem obvious but the sickest patients go first, so it was a little bit more hectic i think right at the beginning of all this, a little more methodical because not quite the same urgency but there are ambulances walking up and down here from lots of different hospitals and lots of private ambulance services, as well. one of the big headlines we're hearing about, when might with hospital be up and running that sees 125,000 er visits a year, they're saying to to three weeks for the reasons you mentioned, getting the pumps back online. >> such a big hospital. two other hospitals have been evacuated. we had warning of this storm. shouldn't hospitals have done anything differently to avoid this situation? >> yeah, you know, we've been asking that same question and i will tell you there was protocols put in place in 2003
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after the blackout of 2003 and talking to the leadership of various hospitals which i have been doing they say they followed those protocols. let me give you a quick description. at bellevue, for example, you had the pumps as you mentioned, the oil pumps closer to sea level or below. generators are throughout the hospital but the oil is, again, those pumps because they can be underneath sea level they can be affected by the flooding. they're encased in submarine-like containers but they say even those containers were subjected to the flooding. they actually -- the water got inside that containment sort of, you know, area around those pumps so these people are literally as rob was mentioning they created bucket brigades, the national guard did to try to get the oil up to the generators. i talked to the president of hhd, hospital health corporation, this is how he put it. >> well, this was an
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unprecedented event. we weathered hurricane irene 14 or 15 months ago with the same emergency preparations and it didn't come close to endangering the hospital. this hospital sits 20 feet above sea level. so it was obviously that anticipated that we would get a storm surge of this magnitude. >> 20 feet above sea level, john. you heard. higher even than new york nyul n nchn nyulangone. >> sanjay gupta where that evacuation continues. >> it is eight minutes past the hour. in breezy point, queens, residents are sifting through the wreckage of homes. at least 110 homes burned in the firestorm. new york governor andrew cuomo saw the devastation himself yesterday and offered comfort to
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the families who are now literally picking up the pieces of their lives. >> more live pictures to show you, live pictures of that crane, the one, the boom crane that was dangling some 90 stories above midtown manhattan. it's now been secured to the luxury high-rise building aand supposedly no longer poses a threat and it's gridlock around there. the mayor says the streets won't re-open until the weekend at the earliest. >> talking about this, laguardia and how long would it remain closed? flights will resume this morning at laguardia's airport. laguardia located along flushing bay had been flooded out due to the storm surge caused by hurricane sandy and new york's other two major airports, jfk and newark liberty re-opened. however they're running reduced schedules. >> working so hard to get these open. i was surprised they were able to get laguardia open.
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helping to rescue stranded residents in hoboken. the streets flooded and those waters still very dangerous. filled with sewage and heating oil among other things. mayor dawn zimmer says half of hoboken's 50,000 residents are stranded inside their homes, most without electricity. in a few minutes we'll head live to the jersey shore where the scope is just being revealed after a wall of water pulverized the coastline. it is ten minutes past the hour. now to the presidential election and the final battlegrounds the candidates are fighting over as voting is just five days away now. president obama and mitt romney set to deliver their final arguments to battleground voters after a sandy sidebar as they both return to the complain trail. new polls confirm the race is simply too close to call. "the wall street journal"/nbc marist poll shows romney withor
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rather, obama with a six-point lead in iowa, a three-point lead in wisconsin and a two-point lead in pelonew hampshire. 78% of likely voters approve of his response while 44% view romney's reaction favorably. neither is speaking to politicize the tragedy. how could it affect the race? could it affect the race. >> in many ways it has. look, president obama in this time of tragedy has been able to really step into the role as commander in chief and as the leader in chief and in many ways one of mitt romney's top surrogates has provided an incredible amount of cover, that is the new jersey governor chris christie. president obama was up there. let's listen what christi had to say about the president and what the president had to say about the new jersey governor. >> i cannot thank the president enough for his personal concern and compassion for our state and
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the people of our state and heard it on the phone conversations with him but i was able to witness it today personally. >> i think the people of new jersey recognize that he has put his heart and soul into making sure that the people in new jersey bounce back even stronger than before. >> and there you have president obama and chris christie less than 24 hours surveying the damage up in new jersey, as you said the campaign has restarted again, zoraida. today we will see president obama in wisconsin, colorado, nevada and see mitt romney in virginia and, of course, surrogates such as bill clinton, joe biden, paul ryan and marco rubio will be fanned out across the country in these closing days of the campaign. >> mark, thank you. at the bottom of the hour, we'll get analysis of the final days from our political experts in residence, cnn contributor ana navarro and rick sack re
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socarides and live coverage will begin at 6:00 p.m. eastern time. >> five days to go. surveying the damage, president obama gets a firsthand look at the devastation caused by sandy in new jersey. we'll take you live to belmar right on the jersey shore. [ female announcer ] ready for a taste of what's hot?
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it gives us 5x the rewards on our internet, phone charges and cable, plus at office supply stores. rewards we put right back into our business. this is the only thing we've ever wanted to do and ink helps us do it. make your mark with ink from chase. the cleanup effort underway along the jersey shore caused by sandy is now just being revealed. in seaside heights houses were picked up and moved. the roller coaster now in the ocean. shots like these tell the tale. you want to look inside a house now that had its roof simply torn off. down along the jersey shore firefighters have a lot on their hands including gas battles.
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are they worried about explosions? >> reporter: they are very concerned about it. really it's emerging as issue number one at this stage in the recovery effort that is ongoing. why? because these gas lines shear off and in a neighborhood like this underwater in some areas, you can see these are ripe for gas line rupturing, bubbling up through the water accumulating this a home. when officials go to re-energize the lines, bring in the electricity again they risk the chance of an explosion and more fires spreading. we have seen this devastation, videotape has come in some shot by a firefighter in bricks township, how these gas fires are destroying neighborhoods long after the winds of the hurricane has subsided.
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also, we had a real problem in another area, similar gas fires hoping to get officials to shut off the main supplies and allow the gas leaks to vent before they re-energize the electricity lines. john. >> jim, we're still talking about evacuations in some cases and cleanup, what's the status of those? >> reporter: they are ongoing. there are still people that have not been evacuated and people are working in order to do that i talked with one young man yesterday who had just gotten out. let me tell you, some of the people coming out are very contrite having heard what governor christie said how they put other lives at risk. listen to this. >> i stayed in the house because i thought that, you know, it would probably be like last year, really nothing but i was wrong because as the storm got worse and i stayed in the house, i realized that i probably made
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a mistake. >> seaside heights is where he was from, one of the last evacuated there late afternoon and talked to him in an evacuation center. they thought they could stick it out and admit now they were wrong. >> jim in belmar, new jersey. still such a difficult situation for so many along the jersey shore. >> so sad, isn't it? we have stunning images to show you out of connecticut. cnn ireporter george due pops shot these high on top of each other on top of a boat yard and all of the homes nearby. george says he has lived in this area for 30 years and has simply never seen anything like this. we have to travel a few towns over or he did to get some of these images because he didn't have any of his power at home and had to find power in order to send it in. >> look at those boats, obviously there's so much help
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we're minding your business. u.s. stock markets closed mixed after being closed for two days because of superstorm sandy and u.s. stock futures are trading lower this market indicating markets will open at 9:30 a.m.
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eastern. >> a lot of places on the east coast, one of the things we've seen is long, long lines at gas stations. christine romans is here to tell us about it. >> you have half of the stations without power or closed in new jersey and parts of new york and you've got long, long lines. i saw them yesterday a half mile or more, reports of mile-long lines for gasoline. it's not necessarily a gas shortage, it's an inability to access the gas. why? because a lot of these -- a lot of them don't have any power and some are having logistics problems so gasoline coming out of the refinery but not getting to the gas stations, so we're told this is going to be a problem for the next few days. people are filling up their cars and gas cans because they're running generators and shane saws like crazy. new york, new jersey and connecticut, very wooded, mature trees. people got to get out of there and clear their own homes and roads and so that's what you're
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seeing there. it really is tough. if you own your own business, i mean people are very upset about this. i talked to a livery cab driver who said, look, i've got two gallons of gas and customers all day long. what am i going to do? >> you're the first reporter warn all of us to check our insurance for hurricane deductibles. now there's news that andrew cuomo wants to wave this deductible. does he have the power to do it. >> state insurance regulators do have the pow story tell the insurance companies what the trigger will be. if a storm lands, check your policy, if a storm lands as a hurricane it could mean your deductible is not the $500 deductible you thought you had but a percentage of your home, on a 300,000 home, it could be $15 through thousan1
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$15,000. governor cuomo saying they will not apply to sandy. what would the impact be on the other end? if the insurance companies lose a lot of money on this, will they write fewer policies? what will that mean? at this point it could save you thousands of dollars if they make sure the hurricane deductible doesn't go through. i haven't heard back from the insurance industry. >> thank you so much. such important information you're giving us. 26 minutes past the hour. a small, very small taste of normalcy in new york after sandy. some subways are back in service. this is on a very limited basis. the latest on the recovery coming up. energy is being produced to power our lives. while energy development comes with some risk, north america's natural gas producers are committed
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stranded and powerless. three days after sandy, frustration and desperation sets in. >> there is no rest for the candidates. every hour counts with five days left in a razor-close race. welcome back to "early start." i'm zoraida sambolin. >> john berman. it's 30 minutes after the hour. good morning, everyone. >> we begin with the latest on the aftermath of sandy, the city that never sleeps trying to get moving again. some subways are up and running again and they are free but they are very limited and there's a car pool requirement to get into manhattan, as well. >> battered beyond recognition. new pictures along the jersey shore's barrier island. houses picked up by the force of the ocean some buried in sand and governor chris christie saying the jersey shore of my
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youth is gone. >> the storm's death toll has reached 124 people with 56 of those in the united states. at least 20 of them -- 28 in new york. and close to 5 million customers are still waiting for the power to come back on. >> it is going to be another very slow go in new york city this morning with more unprecedented dumper to bumper traffic and limited subways and buses but they will be mobbed. take a look at this. a sale of two cities, a photo of the iconic brooklyn bridge, lights out on the manhattan side, lights on in brooklyn. what a picture. that really says it all. our dr. sanjay gupta is standing by at belle hospital where patients are on the move because power failed but first to rob marciano. governor cuomo declared a transportation emergency. if you see it here you'll know why. there will be no fares for subways and buses but many of these lines aren't up and running yet, are they?
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>> yeah, so the fares, you have free fare, that's great but if you can't get on one, you can't get on one. the subways will run north of 34th street but because of that, lack of subway service, the buses are completely jammed. and so you can't even get on a bus. there's people pushing and shoving just to try to squeeze their way on so frustration already building yesterday with only day two. you can imagine day three, four and five as we go without power. standing outside the brooklyn bridge starting at 6:00 you will need three or more people in their car. one of the things they're trying to do to alleviate the gridlock that paralyzed the city yesterday. the tunnels are close pumped out the water. subways still pumping out all the water that spewed in from the storm. so that is going to be the main issue today as transportation, people going to be walking over this bridge, a lot of walkers yesterday, john. i assume that's going to be the case again today. >> what about the power? still a virtual blackout below
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25th street. many without electricity and water. i guess it would be understandable if we saw frayed nerves about now. >> reporter: i think today we are. yesterday was still an adventure. people being patient but i think as you get towards day three and four without power and water and heat, yeah, nerves will be frayed. we caught up with a lot of people and went to public housing where they're having a hard time. here's what one gentleman was struggling with yesterday. >> that's rough. >> maybe even more than i am. i'm trying to make it with all that i have thanks to my fiancee. >> reporter: you can imagine if you're in poor health or elderly or up in your 15th floor apartment. you can do that for a day but at some point you have to come down and get supplies. that's what we'll be dealing with, making those trips up and
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down stairs. some were going to fire hydrants getting buckets of water and lugging them up to flush their toilets and get some form of sanitation but that will be an issue. the other is it's going to get colder over the weekend so without power most people don't have heat and temperatures will drop into the 30s here in manhattan, maybe near the freezing mark in some places without power outside of manhattan so staying warm will be a matter of survival as we go into next week. >> thanks, rob marciano. you've been up and down the east coast doing amazing work during the storm, thanks very much. >> and the power of hurricane sandy was felt on staten island across the harbor from manhattan and brooklyn. the south shore took a beating from the storm surge. check out the damage in this section. others more dangers in the water. a new jersey oil facility leaked 336,000 gallons of fuel along the arthur kilt, the tidal
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waterway. >> thousands will wake up on shellered cots. take a look. these are scenes from tom rivers, new jersey, 9,000 in 13 states spent tuesday night in red cross shelters and donations are starting to pour in, nearly $12 million so far. if you would like to help go to cnn.com/impact. we have all kinds of information there on what you can do to make a difference. 35 minutes past the hour. president obama met with new jersey governor chris christie yesterday to survey all of the damage and the two men put on a rare display of bipartisan respect and cooperation. >> i cannot thank the president enough for his personal concern and compassion for our state and for the people of our state and i heard it on the phone conversations with him and i was i believe to witness it today personally. >> i think the people of new jersey recognize that he has put his heart and soul into making sure that the people of new
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jersey bounce back even stronger than before. >> and now with the election just five days away, president obama will return full force to the campaign trail today making stops in colorado, wisconsin, nevada, mitt romney also on the road with an appearance this afternoon, that is scheduled in virginia. former senior clinton adviser and newyorker.com writer richard socarides and ana navarro are here. the nice moments that happened yesterday between governor christie and president obama. they've both been avoiding the idea of politicizing this but, ana, what i want to know we're just five days from the electric. women this affect it? >> you know, zoraida, every now and then the right thing to do is also the smart thing to do politically and i think that's what we are seeing in this case. frankly this bromance between
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chris christie and president obama is a sight to be seen and something to be heard. but i think it's also very refreshing. i don't know who it helps, i don't know who is it hurts but it helps the people of new jersey and i think it's good for the people of the united states to see that we unite in a moment of crisis and put helping people in suffering conditions above party or politics even five days before an election. >> richard is nodding his head. i think this is the one moment where both of you agree. >> i couldn't have said it any better than what ana just said. actually ana and i agree more often than most people would imagine, but -- >> oh, don't say that, richard. you'll ruin my reputation. >> i actually think ana that beautifully put and it showed a lot of respect and cooperation and really well done both by governor christie and the president. >> i don't mean to harp on this but want to share something the governor said to fox news when
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he asked about whether or not he was happy with romney's, you know, with romney's response here. he said i have no idea nor am i the least bit concerned or interested. i've just got a job to do in new jersey that's much bigger than presidential politics and i could care less about any of that stuff. will that hurt romney in particular? i know, ana, you said you're not sure who wins or loses but could that hurt him? >> well, you know what, though, i actually watched that clip and he said even more things than that and i think it's very typical of chris christie. i think he was almost irritated that he was getting asked about politics. as was president obama when he was asked about politics and both said this has nothing to do with politics. we are all about helping the people of new jersey, helping the people in need, helping the people of new york so i think that's the quintessential chris christie that we've come to know, a lot of us love and he was being sincere, you know,
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don't ask me about mitt romney right now. don't ask me about presidential politics. it's a new world after sandy for new jersey and i've got i bunch of people in harm's way who i need to take care of right now. don't bug me with this stuff. >> but you got to wonder if it is going to give president obama a boost in the polls. a new poll shows an overwhelming amount, 78% of voters approve of president obama's response to hurricane sandy and 44% view romney's response favorably. 35% have no opinion so do you think it will give president obama a boost in the polls? >> well, i don't know if it will help him in the polls but i do think for the president good government is good politics right now and unfortunately for governor romney, you know, all he can do from now is stay out of the way. i think that's why you saw in that poll such a large percentage of people who answered don't know to that question. governor romney in the closing days of this campaign has to take a couple days and take a couple days of a breather and the president gets to be
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president, but, you know, that's kind of the way things happen. >> all right, we're going to invite you back during the 6:00 hour to dig deeper into the polls. richard socarides and ana navarro, thanks for joining us. john, back to you. >> every vote counts especially during a presidential election so asked some early voters to share their stories, the issues that matter most for them, who they voted for and why calling these voter graphs. first up is richard moore of orlando supporting president obama. he said he voted early because he's a poll clerk and can't vote on election day. his big issues, the economy, taxes and education and this is mitt romney voter deeni smith who gave us a picture of her granddaughter. she said she voted early because she wanted to avoid the long lines. her number one issue, the economy. >> i got to tell you, i love these. send us your votergraph and be a
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part of our show. we love having you. >> faith, family and the presidential election, both campaigns try to get religion in one of the final battleground states. we will have a live report from the ground coming up next. you're watching "early start." you see us, at the start of the day. on the company phone list that's a few names longer. you see us bank on busier highways. on once empty fields. everyday you see all the ways all of us at us bank are helping grow our economy.
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so you can use less gel. log on now to androgeloffer.com and you could pay as little as ten dollars a month for androgel 1.62%. what are you waiting for? this is big news. good morning to you. welcome back to "early start." 44 minutes past the hour. iowa is one of the final battlegrounds getting plenty of attention from president obama and mitt romney. religious voters are a critical voting bloc for both campaigns in the hawkeye state. cnn's poppy harlow is taking a closer look, live in waterloo, iowa. good morning. >> reporter: good morning, zoraida. of the nearly 3 million iowans, 30% call them evangelical or catholic and in 2008 president obama won 60% of the catholic vote so it is key but it is
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especially key when you talk about a state like this which is split nearly down the middle and as folks tell me it's a purple state this year. in the heart of des moines evangelical christians flock to church to talk faith, family and the presidential election. >> i honestly when it all boils down to, what does the bible say and which candidate is going to follow the closest? >> reporter: for bob and rachel bradshaw that is mitt romney. >> i don't know how in his right mind the president could be for abortion the way he is and support same-sex marriage. it just -- it's hard for me that somebody that claims to be a christian, you know, makes statements to support things like that. >> it's not been an easy choice to make either way. >> reporter: this couple has wrestlinged with it. >> my religious beliefs -- if
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anything, it's probably going to end up being mitt romney. >> reporter: 57% of voters in the republican iowa caucuses identified themselves as evangelicals and supported rick santorum over mitt romney. many uneasy over romney's moderate pass on abortion and his mormon faith. >> i think it concerns anybody who considers them an evangelical christian. >> reporter: that was then. you previously said the romney campaign, not social conservatives -- >> i think he's proved himself he has tried to make that outreach to social conservatives as well as economic conservatives. he's done a good job here in iowa. >> reporter: well, iowa's evangelical voters seem to be moving into mitt romney's camp here in traditional democratic dubuque the president may face more of a challenge. the catholic voters are split over issues like abortion, funding for contraception and the government's role in providing for the poor.
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>> the life issues which many catholics, most catholics hold dear and central to their faith, but then there's this belief that remains that the democratic party somehow cares for the poor better. i think it comes down to that tension. >> reporter: how big a role does your religion play in your vote? >> i think it's big. i'm an ex-nun. and i -- the group of nuns that i'm associated with to this day are pushing for obama. >> reporter: is the pro-choice stance difficult to reconcile? >> it was very difficult and bothered me for a long time. >> reporter: as did the same-sex marriage issue both of which she ultimately looked past but for catholics like ellen markham and her daughter, dawn, some are nonnegotiable. >> for me it's the life issues. i'm very pro-life and i want an
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administration that supports that view. >> and i would say sanctity of life and sanctity of marriage. >> reporter: another factor really weighing in, zoraida, the fact that the u.s. conference of catholic bishops has weighed in perhaps strongly than they have in decades opposing the obama administration's health care plan when it comes to providing funding for contraception and, you know, the evangelical vote is key in iowa and ohio. if those voters get in the race and vote for mitt romney as they're telling me they will and don't sit it out as many did in 2008, that's huge. >> certainly going to be interesting to watch. poppy, thank you. we have this programming note for you. cnn's anderson cooper takes a final close look at the candidates in america's choice 2012 countdown to election day. sunday night, 8:00 eastern. it is right here on cnn. >> 48 minutes after the hour right now and some signs of normalcy in new york after
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sandy. subways are back in service on a limited basis but laguardia airport will open again this morning. amazingly fast. i really didn't think it would get open this quickly again. we'll have the latest coming up next. [ woman ] it's 32 minutes to go time, and the candidate's speech is in pieces all over the district. the writer's desktop and the coordinator's phone are working on a joke with local color. the secure cloud just received a revised intro from the strategist's tablet. and while i make my way into the venue, the candidate will be rehearsing off of his phone. [ candidate ] and thanks to every young face i see out there. [ woman ] his phone is one of his biggest supporters. [ female announcer ] with cisco at the center... working together has never worked so well.
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welcome back to "early start," everyone. checking in on the aftermath, the latest half on hurricane
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sandy. 28 in new york have died. close to 35 million customers still waiting for the power to come back on. >> new york city is slowly attempting to inch back to normlal. some subways are up and running and they are free of charge along with buses but most of lower manhattan has no power temperatures dipping into 30s and 40s, a cold night for many. the national guard is helping to evacuate still residents of hoboken who have been left stranded and the mayor says 90% of the city is pout power. 60,000 rest depps cannot get out of their homes so they're stranded. >> other nut, president obama back on the campaign trail with the election approaching fast, wisconsin, nevada, colorado all on the itinerary. we've learned that the total spending on the 2012 federal
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elections could top $6 billion. billion with a "b," a new record. >> this woman asking that, do you know how much they spent? there you have it. 53 minutes past the hour. u.s. customs and border protection says a jeep got put atop the fence that separates mexico from yuma. take a look. two would i have be smugglers tried to get their jeep over the fence using what looks like a makeshift ramp. they got away and the border guards seized the jeep. >> looks like a movie shoot. >> that's insane. and that cheering you're hearing is the streets of san francisco. some 1 million people packed the streets to celebrate the giants and their world series title. the crowd was 50 deep in some places along the parade route in downtown. they swept the tigers for the
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second crown in three years. glargss to the giants. how about next year? you share the wealth a little. enough already. >> with chicago. 54 past the hour. coming up the water rushing in, the power going out. we have amazing time-lapsed video of sandy slamming new york city. ags, a crash management system and the world's only tridion safety cell which can withstand over three and a half tons. small in size. big on safety. which can withstand over three and a half tons. the wheels of progress haven't been very active lately. but because of business people like you, things are beginning to get rolling. and regions is here to help. making it easier with the expertise and service to keep those wheels turning. from business loans to cash management, we want to be your partner moving forward. so switch to regions. and let's get going. together.
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welcome back to "early start." 58 minutes past the hour. i'm zoraida sambolin along with john berman looking at top trends on the web this morning. >> amazing footage. check this out. sandy in seconds. incredible. time-lapsed video from across the east river shows hurricane sandy slamming into manhattan.
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this takes two days and compresses it down into two minutes and shows the second the lights go out in lower manhattan and shows everything. really amazing. logon to our web side. go on to cnn.com/trends for all those top cnn trend. >> "early start" continues right now. we're in shock. everybody is in shock. >> there's no words to put on what happened. we have to start over. >> three days since sandy and storm victims are struggling to recover. >> it is five days until election day. both candidates back on the road in the final battleground states. good morning to you. thanks for being with us this morning. i'm zoraida sambolin. >> i'm john berman. it is 6:00 a.m. in the east. we begin with the latest in the aftermath of that superstorm, the storm that was hurricane
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sandy. new york city is very slowly attempting to inch back to normal today. some subways and buses will be up and running again this morning and they're free. but most of lower manhattan still has no power with temperatures dipping into 30s a. it's cold. >> that's going to be really tough for folks. and there are new and very heartbreaking pictures along the jersey shore's barrier islands. houses picked up by the force of the ocean. some were buried in the sand. governor chris christie, who toured the destruction with president obama saying some parts of the shore might never look the same again. and the storm's death toll has now reached 124 people, with 56 of those in the united states. at least 28 in new york. and close to 5 million customers are still waiting for the power to come back on. >> first, the economic capital of our country, slowly getting back to normal this morning, even while facing extreme damage, power outages, and people having to walk hours and hours, just to get to work.
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meanwhile, another hospital lost generator power in lower manhattan. right now, hundreds of people being rushed out of bellevue at this very moment, after hundreds of others were evacuated yesterday. our dr. sanjay gupta is live at bellevue right now. but first we want to go to rob marciano who's down at the brooklyn bridge. and rob, governor cuomo has declared a transportation emergency, meaning there'll be no fares for buses, subways, trains. but the problem is there aren't that many up and running today, are there? >> reporter: no. and yesterday when the buses got running, they were just absolutely jammed full. so by the time they even got to 10th or 14th street, they weren't stopping because they didn't have any room on them. there are seens like the queensboro bridge, the stop there, take a look at the people pushing and shoving. a bit of chaos and desperation. a lot of people had to go to work uptown or elsewhere, and i spoke to a number of them that were in fear of their jobs. i had to lend my phone to a couple, they had to call their boss and verify that they couldn't get on the bus. that's one of the things we'll
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have to deal with today. cabs are doubling up, but still not enough of those. the bottom line, the 5 million or 6 million people that typically would be taking the subways are now aboveground. they're trying anyway to get to where they need to go. there are limited subway lines up and running today. mostly all of them, actually, are north of 34th street and the tunnel is close. the bridges by the brooklyn bridge, which will have a fair amount of foot traffic, you can believe it, starting now, actually. if you come over by car, you need at least three people. you'll start carpooling and forcing that so you don't have the gridlock you had yesterday across manhattan. >> that was a sight to behold. how about the electricity, rob? the power. still a virtual blackout below 25th street right now. is it starting to fray people's nerves? >> reporter: i think so. you know, it's day three now. yesterday was still a little bit more of an adventure. people were struggling to find places just to charge their cell phones, but i think as we get towards day three and four, which coned says we're still going to be without power the next couple of days, that's going to fray nerves.
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we caught up with a number of people yesterday, some in public housing, who had to actually go for water at local fire hydrants. here's what one had to say. >> this has just happened out of the blue, they shut the water down, so we have no water, no light, and we've got to get food, so it's like, it's really, really not a good situation. >> reporter: some of those people having to lug five gallons of water up and down 15 flights of stairs. so that sort of thing is going to keep going for the next couple of days. and on top of that, cold air is setting in behind sandy. we'll see temperatures drop the next couple of days, well into the 30s, near the freezing mark across the storm zone. so surviving through the cold at night will be yet another issue with all the power out. john? >> a tough weekend ahead for all of us in the northeast. thank you, rob marciano, thanks very much. >> it's three minutes past the hour. back to the painstaking transfer of more than 700 patients out of new york city's flagship public hospital, bellevue hospital center. flooding wiped out fuel pumps in
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the hospital's basement, which is where they power those generators. chief medical correspondent, dr. sanjay gupta, has been following the transfer since it began. he is at bellevue right now. sanjay, what is the very latest there right now? >> reporter: well, you know, it is ongoing, zoraida. it's quite remarkable. you've had ambulances sort of lining up throughout the night. i don't know how well you can see this, but a lot of ambulances, probably about 50 or so. if you can take a look over here, what happens is, these ambulances, this is just a continuous conveyor belt. they go, drop the patients off at the various hospitals around the city and they keep coming back, picking up more patients, close to 700, as you mentioned, in total. they expect that they're going to be done around noon today. i should point out, you see a lot of ambulances, there are also some buses as well for the less cell patients. and also, bellevue is a place that takes care a lot of prisoners. there were corrections vehicles earlier as well. about 60 prisoners were transported out of bellevue. it's eerie to look at, zoraida.
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i drive by this hospital all the time. it's always lit up. it's a well-known hospital throughout the entire country, if not the world, and it's just very eerily dark right now, except for these ambulances. >> and sanjay, a lot of people are wondering how this happened. there are two other hospitals that also had to be evacuated. so now there is only one hospital that is up and running. it is in lower manhattan. and we had advanced warning of the storm. is there anything that these hospitals should have done differently in your opinion to avoid a situation like this? >> reporter: well, you know, i've been asking the same question, one thing, you know the geography of new york, a lot of people are learning that this hospital, as well as langone hospital, one of the others that were evacuated, are right on the east river, which is important because they were subjected to the flooding. i talked to the president of the hospital system here in new york, asked that specific question, and take a listen to what he said. >> well, this was an unprecedented event. we weathered hurricane irene 14
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or 15 months ago, with the same emergency preparations and it didn't come close to endangering the hospital. this hospital sits 20 feet above sea level. so it was are, obviously, not anticipated, that we would get a so storm surge of this magnitude. >> reporter: hard to, you know, i mean, when you listen to that, zoraida, you get this impression that you know they put these pumps, they try and protect them from storm surge as much as possible, but despite how much this was anticipated, what you're hearing from him is they could not have predicted this specific thing. this hospital, asked him this as well, this hospital, they say, two to three weeks before it oppos opens. that's a long time. 25,000 emergency room visits a year. so that's going to make a huge impact on this part of the neighborhood. >> yeah, unfortunately, there were a lot of hard lessons learned here. dr. sanjay gupta, thank you for spending time with us this morning. >> six minutes after the hour right now.
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and in breezy point, if queens, residents are shifting through the wreckage of homes that were destroyed in a massive fire during sandy. at least 110 homes burned in that firestorm. new yo and let's look at some live pictures of that crane. once dangling some 90 stories above midtown, manhattan, has now been secured to that luxury high-rise building it is attached to and they say that it no longer poses a threat. however, the streets that are surrounding the crane remain closed at this hour. it caused horrific gridlock in one of the busiest areas of new york city. mayor bloomberg says the streets will not reopen until the weekend, and that is at the earliest. new york city airports are back in business. flights resume this morning at laguardia airport, which is located along flushing bay. you have to look at this, this was yesterday. both runways were flooded, but they will be operating today, i have to say, impressively fast.
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jfk and newark liberty reopen wednesday. all three airports running reduced schedules. in just a few minutes, we will head across the hudson river to hoboken, new jersey, where most of the city's 50,000 people may be trapped without power, by filthy water and live wires on the streets. >> after seeing the destruction himself, president obama promised to cut through red tape and speed up the recovery from sandy. the white house says he's getting a briefing before heading back out on the campaign trail and he will be in touch with administrators throughout the day today, for progress reports. meantime, with just five shopping days left until the election day, president obama and mitt romney will both be hitting the final battleground states very, very hard. we've got a look at some new polling in a few of these states, "the wall street journal"/nbc/marist poll shows the president with a six-point lead over mitt romney in iowa, a three-point lead in wisconsin, and a very small two-point edge in new hampshire. i'm joined by mark preston live in washington.
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mark, there's been a lot of talk about the president's handling of hurricane sandy and how it might affect this race. we get a glimpse of what americans think about this handling in a new poll by abc/"washington post." 78% of voters approve of the president's response, 44% say they approve of mitt romney's reaction. neither candidate is seeking to politicize this were tragedy overtly. but it really does beg the question, how could this affect this race? >> it certainly puts the president in the position of being a commander in chief and being the leader at the time of a crisis. and in many ways, he's gotten a lot of support of one of mitt romney's top surrogates, and that's chris christie. and just yesterday we saw president obama and chris christie in new jersey surveying the damage. let's listen to what they had to say about each other. >> i cannot thank the president
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enough about his concern and the compassion for our state. i heard it on the phone skand w able to witness it today personally. >> i think the people of new jersey recognize that he has put his heart and soul into making sure that the people of new jersey bounce back even stronger than before. >> and john, we don't like to politicize these times of crisis, but this is a political consultant's dream, to have the president next to one of mitt romney's top surrogates. and as you said, we are back in earnest right now on the campaign trail. president obama will be going to wisconsin, colorado, nevada today. mitt romney in the state of virginia. and of course, joe biden, paul ryan, bill clinton, marco rubio, and many others fanned out across the country right now. as you said, we are in the closing days of this very, very tense campaign. >> it really was a remarkable picture of the president and the new jersey governor, and i think a refreshingly bipartisan picture to a lot of americans. mark preston, live in washington, always great to see you. thanks for being here this morning. at the bottom of the hour, we'll get to analysis of the campaign's final days from our
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political experts in residents. cnn contributor and republican strategist ana navarro and richard socarides and former senior adviser to president clinton. and in just five days, five days, it will finally be election night in america. cnn's live election coverage will begin at 6:00 p.m. eastern time. and in sandy's aftermath, people in hoboken, new jersey are trapped in a nasty flood. the effort to get them help or get them out. or that printing in color had to cost a fortune. nobody said an all-in-one had to be bulky. or that you had to print from your desk. at least, nobody said it to us.
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welcome back. 14 minutes past the hour. scrambling for supplies and higher ground after sandy. national guard troops are helping to get thousands of people stranded in hoboken, new jersey, to safety. they are trapped in very dangerous floodwaters, filthy, sewage-filled, with the potential of live power lines as well. hln meteorologist bob van dillen is in hoboken. and bob, we know you spoke with the mayor there who said yesterday, about half of the city's residents could not get out of their homes. what is the latest now? >> reporter: the latest now, brand-new information coming up, which is great news, the floodwaters in hoboken are gone. they drained the city streets last night, everything is now dry. that's the good news. but yesterday morning at this time, different story. the national guard is behind me
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right now. yesterday morning at this time, they were in the same spot, where their trucks were idling with all their troops in the back, ready to break out at first light, pick up the peopled that needed to be evacuated, and bring them back to this area, which is a staging point. this morning, different story. the trucks are here, they're not idling and i haven't seen a single troop. that is some good news. the bad news is, we still have no power and it's colder this morning. temperatures in hoboken, about 42 degrees, the skies have opened up, it is now a cool one. but yesterday morning at this time, the people who were evacuated just happy to be out. in fact win talked to one guy. here's what he had to say. >> going the night without food, water, electricity, so we had to leave, no matter what. so we had no milk, so we just had to leave. >> reporter: yeah, and that really was the story from just about everybody that i talked to yesterday. they were running out of supplies. they didn't realize it was going to get that high, the water. the water was essentially waist deep. and that water was filled with sewage, with fuel, with floating
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debris. it was plain old dangerous. not only that, open manhole covers are a possibility. you fall into one of those, you're not going to come back out. it was just dangerous. so the national guard with big trucks pulled out a lot of people. but this morning coming in, the other story besides being out of power is the lack of gasoline. our truck is about a quarter of a tank right now coming from newark to hoboken. we tried to go into one of those 24-hour gas stations, the lined wrapped all the way around the corner, there was probably a two to three-hour wait, by the time you get it, it might even be tapped, but the police were there trying to hold control of that situation too. >> a total mess. and we're still concerned about those falling temperatures. bob van dillen, live in hoboken, thank you for that report. >> so much help is needed on the east coast. if you're watching this right now, seeing this devastation and you want to help, go to cnn.com/impact. we have a lot of tips there, you can see what you can do. and of course, it is the final push before election day right now, just five days away. we're not just talking about the presidential race. >> shelly adler is a democratic
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congressional hopeful in new jersey. we followed her as she balanced a campaign and a family of four boys in this edition of "road warriors." >> i'm shelly adler and i'm a candidate for congress in new jersey, third congressional district. i've been campaigning since january 30th. i wanted to continue the legacy of my late husband and our family and our belief in public service. we are constantly on the road. we're trying to meet people all the time. we make phone calls to people, we go to events where people might be. so nice to meet you! it's very important to go door to door. anything happen in school today? i keep in touch with my kids during the day by phone or by text. i'm good, how are you? campaigns are very much a group effort. it's sort of a battle mentality in the sense nah you become close quickly. being in congress requires a tremendous amount of travel. i'm fortunate to allow in an area that lets me travel back and forth on a daily basis.
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i'll go from here to home to see my children and then i'll go to a debate with my opponent. i'm looking forward to having some sleep on november 7th. thanks for coming along with me on my road to congress. >> i'm tired watching. 18 minutes after the hour right now. as we've been saying, so much help is needed for people now facing the huge financial burden of trying to rebuild their lives after sandy. we're going to tell you what hurricane victims should know about their insurance deducti e deductibles, coming up next. this happy couple used capital one venture miles for their "destination wedding." double miles you can "actually" use. but with those single mile travel cards... [ bridesmaid ] blacked out... but i'm a bridesmaid. oh! "x" marks the spot she'll never sit. but i bought a dress! a toast... ...to the capital one venture card.
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minding your business this morning, u.s. stock markets closed mixed yesterday, after being shut down completely for two days because of superstorm sandy. and u.s. stock features are trading lower this morning, indicating futures will open lower at 9:30 a.m. eastern. >> and christine romans is here to talk about the long lines for gas in the northeast. this is astounding, when you look at the video, and it just goes for miles. >> it does go for miles. and police, the local news report have that police are at a lot of these gas stations, breaking up fights, keeping people from cutting in line, you know, cutting in line is something that really causes a lot of problems when you've been waiting for two hours to get gas. the issue is not necessarily a gas shortage, you guys. but there's not power at some of these pumps, and you've got about half of new jersey and new york's gas stations closed right now. you can see it. if you're out driving, you can see the cones in front of so many of these gas stations, they're just not open for business. chris christie, the governor of
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new jersey, says that a hundred generators from fema are coming. they've got a whole bunch of diesel oil that's going to be coming. we're talking about filling up our cars, these governments are talking about keeping sewage treatment plants open and getting generators to a lot of places. we think we've got it bad, we're trying to make sure that just the infrastructure of these big states is being, you know, is being taken care of. and it's a really, really big deal. >> you've been tracking insurance deductibles, the issue of people getting money after this storm. what's the latest there? >> the latest here is that the state regulators are saying, your hurricane deductible will not be triggered. when your hurricane deductible is triggered, it means you don't pay the $500 deductible you think you have on your home, you pay more like a percentage. that's $15,000, not the $300 you thought. andrew cuomo saying, no, those hurricane triggers will not go into effect, you will just pay
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your deductible, so that will save, if this really does happen, that will save homeowners in new york, new jersey, connecticut, tens of thousands of dollars. so that is a very big development on the insurance front. and i can tell you that right now, you've got armies of insurance adjustors, armed with ladders and tape measures and clipboards who are ready to start taking these adjustments and assessments of your property. >> how are the insurance companies going to feel about that, though? >> that's a really good question. you know, an insurance industry spokesperson told us that premiums have been rising for several years now because of the higher cost of rebuilding in these areas, that are storm-prone, and also because of the increased frequence of storms since 2005, so premiums have already been going up. my guess would be that premiums will keep going up. >> what's the one thing we need to know about our money? >> the one thing you need to know about your money is the jobs report will be released, as scheduled, tomorrow. that will be the last big piece of economic news about your money and your job situation before the election. oh, yes, there's an election on tuesday.
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that happens tomorrow. that jobs report, we will get it for sure. >> a big release, 8:30 tomorrow. >> yep. >> see it live, here, on cnn. >> if you have electricity. >> no kidding. 25 minutes after the hour right now. hundreds of hospital patients on the move after sandy. the massive effort to get them to a hospital with electricity. we'll tell you all about it, coming up next. i'm a conservative investor. i invest in what i know. i turned 65 last week. i'm getting married. planning a life. there are risks, sure. but, there's no reward without it. i want to be prepared for the long haul. i see a world bursting with opportunities. india, china, brazil, ishares, small-caps, large-caps, ishares. industrials. low cost. every dollar counts. ishares. income. dividends. bonds. i like bonds. ishares. commodities. diversification.
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stranded and powerless. three days after sandy, frustration and desperation sets in. >> no rest for the candidates. every hour counts, with just five days left in a razor-close election. welcome back to "early start," everyone, i'm john berman. >> and i'm zoraida sambolin, everyone. nice to have you with us this morning. we begin with the latest on the aftermath of sandy, the city that never sleeps is trying to get moving again. some subways and buses are up and running again this morning and they're free, but they're very limited. and there is a carpool requirement to get into manhattan. >> and battered beyond recognition. new heartbreaking pictures along the jersey shore's barrier island. houses picked up by the force of the ocean. some are buried underneath all the sand. governor chris christie saying the jersey shore of my youth is gone. >> the storm's death toll has now reached 124 people with 56 of those right here in the u.s.,
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at least 28 in new york, and close to 5 million customers are still waiting for the power to come back on. >> and it's going to be another very slow go in new york this morning, with more unprecedented bumper-to-bumper traffic expected. limited subways and buses are running and they will be mobbed. they are freeway today. take a look at this. a tale of two cities for you. a photo of the iconic brooklyn bridge, lights out on the manhattan side, lights on on the brooklyn side. and right now at bellevue hospital, patients are on the move after backup power failed. we're talking to a doctor who knows about disaster. that's coming up next. but first, we're going to go to rob marciano. he's at the brooklyn bridge. rob, governor cuomo has declared a transportation emergency. that means, there will be no fares for subways, trains, and buses. but many of the bus and subway lines are not yet up and running. is that right? >> reporter: yes, that's true. and the few that are up and running were jammed full. yesterday, there were issues with buses that weren't even
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able to stop and pick people up, even scenes like this, near queens, the queensboro bridge station, where there's actually people pushing and shoving, just trying to get on. there's some bit of desperation. a lot of people had to get to work. i talked to a number of people, one of which borrowed my cell phone to say, can i call my boss and tell him i can't get on the bus? there's no way for me to get to work. i think this will be echoed again today. however, subway lines will be running north of 34th street. that may alleviate this issue. we have 5 million to 6 million people who typically take the subways were aboveground yesterday and a lot of foot traffic as you imagine as well. we're by the brooklyn bridge, where there will be a fair amount of foot traffic again today, but you need three people or more if you're going to be driving over the ridge, because that's one of the problems yesterday, zoraida, huge gridlock here in manhattan, because people were trying to get around by car. >> and i'm sure there are going to be police nearby enforcing that, right? >> yes. and going out of here, you're
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fine. you know, the other issue, zoraida, is the power. we're in day three now, nerves are getting a little bit frayed. we caught up with a lot of people yesterday who went to a public housing project and this is what the one gentleman had to say to me about what he's struggling with. >> how's this blackout, storm been treating you? >> maybe even more sicker than i am, i'm trying to make it to the first floor with all the heavy stuff that i've got, thanks to my fiancee. >> reporter: so that was his first trip down the stairs. you can imagine if you're incapacitated or unhealthy or elderly and you live on the 15th floor of one of these buildings and don't have any food or water, at some point you've got to go down those stairs. so today day three, tomorrow, day four without power, there's going to be some serious health issues. and on top of that, as we go through the weekend, temperatures will continue to
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drop, it's going to be colder at night, temperatures will approach freezing. so without the power and heat, that will be another matter of survival going forward. >> it's just terrible. your hearts go out to all of those peoples. rob marciano, thanks very much. john? >> this morning at this very moment, more evacuations from another hospital here in new york. bellevue hospital is moving more than 700 patients after the storm caused generators to fail. as of our latest count last night, there were still about 260 people still to be moved today. bellevue hospital is a couple blocks south of nyu langone medical center, which was also evacuated, leaving just one hospital open in lower manhattan, and that's beth israel. mayor michael bloomberg talked about what happened. >> they didn't think the damage was that bad and we did have a generator going and the national guard helped carry fuel up to the roof, because that's where the fuel tank was and they were running out. but the bottom line is when they got into the basement, they realized there was more damage. >> a lot of questions about this right now. joining us now to talk about this is dr. erwin redlenner, he
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has studied how hospitals handled katrina. he knows everything, really, about disaster preparedness. and doctor, i have to ask you this. we've seen a lot of businesses, big businesses like goldman sachs, big buildings downtown on generator power. they're up and running. why not a hospital? >> well, it's not clear why not a hospital. and one of the problems here is initially, years ago, we had generators in the basements of hospitals, which is obviously something that doesn't really work, because when they get flooded, the generators go out. so they moved the generators up to higher elevations, but leave the fuel pumps down in the basement. and those fuel pumps are susceptible to flooding. it's just a detail that turns the out to be extraordinarily important when the time comes to actually use those generators. >> seems like a crucial detail right now. the president of new york city is helping the hospital corporation, asked by cnn's erin burnett last night, if hospitals were ready for this. let's listen to his answer.
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>> well, this was an unprecedented event. we weathered hurricane irene 14 or 15 months ago, with the same emergency preparations and it didn't come close to endangering the hospital. this hospital sits is 20 feet above sea level. we're actually 15 feet higher than nyu hospital next door, because the terrain just rises slightly here. so it was, obviously, not anticipated that we would get a storm surge of this magnitude. >> i have a couple of questions about this right now. first, let me ask you, how do you think they're handling the evacuation? >> well, the handling of the evacuation, the performance by the hospital staff, the first responders, the national guard, is extraordinary. these are exemplary performances by professionals who know what they're doing and really do care about getting the job done right. so there's nothing to fault about the heroism and the actions of the individuals on scene. it was tremendous. >> but, but, now, i've talked to you before natural disasters, and you are constantly calling for people to be prepared. be prepared for the worst.
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how is the that these hospitals, it really doesn't seem that they were ready for this type of disaster. should they have been more prepared? >> well, i think what should have happened was, there should have been a more detailed engineering look at how the whole system works, to make sure that not just the generator, but everything that needs to feed into the generator, specifically, in this case, the fuel pumps were protected from the inevitable flooding that happens in a coastal storm, especially for hospitals in zone "a." and this is just one of the things that it fell through the cracks, but turns out to be a critical detail. and one of the things about planning for disasters is you've got to imagine everything, possibly, that could go wrong and try to address it before it happens. >> you know, after something like katrina, how can things fall through the cracks? >> it's hard to say. we have big bureaucracies that are managing the preparation of hospitals and other vital parts of our infrastructure, and, it's just one of those things that did not happen. it's one of the many, many lessons that should have been learned from previous disasters.
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they're called wake-up calls. they end up being like snooze alarms. everyone gets excited during the moment of the crisis and we get a lotle a lot less focused afterwards. >> dr. irwin redlenner, thanks very much. still ahead, after surveying the damage from sandy, president obama heads back out to the campaign trail for a final push on the battleground states. our political experts will weigh on what the president and mitt romney have to do in these final five days. vings, especially in this economy. but with three kids, being home more really helped. man: so we went to fidelity. we talked about where we were and what we could do. we changed our plan and did something about our economy. now we know where to go for help if things change again. call or come in today to take control of your personal economy. get free one-on-one help from america's retirement leader.
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joining us right now with a look at what's ahead on "starting point," soledad o'brien. >> lots to talk about this morning. continue to talk about the
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aftermath of sandy. the recovery process has begun, but nearly 5 million people are still in the dark and of course it's getting cold outside. limited relief is on the way in new york city. limited subway service is returning this morning. people are still stuck in flooded communities. the national guard, though, is in and coming to the rescue. we'll talk this morning to one man who was brought to safety in hoboken, new jersey. his wife, eight months pregnant, young kids. just five days away from the presidential election, president obama, mitt romney, are hitting the swing states hard, trying to get votes there. how will the storm affect their campaigns? we'll talk about that with congressman elijah cummings, senator bob menendez, and congresswoman marcsha blackburn our guests this morning. >> lots ahead. thank you. all right. it is 42 minutes past the hour. the power of hurricane sandy was felt on staten island, across the harbor from manhattan and brooklyn. the island's south shore took a beating from the storm surge. check out the damage in the great kills section, and now
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there's more danger in the water. a northern new jersey oil facility has leaked 336,000 gallons of fuel along the arthur kill, the tidal waterway that celebrates staten island from new jersey. and we have some stunning images to show you out of connecticut. cnn ireporter george dupont shot these boats. they're piled on top of each other at a boatyard on bluff animal and there are other homes nearby. george says he has lived in this area for about 30 years and he has never seen anything like this. he had to travel a few towns over to send us these images, because he did not have any power at home. simply amazing. we really appreciate the time and effort you took to do this for us. thank you. john? back to politics right now, this morning. the president met with new jersey governor chris christie this morning to survey the damage in that state. the two men, normally political rivals, expressing mutual respect for one another. >> i cannot thank the president enough for his personal concern and compassion for our state and
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for the people of our state. and i heard it on the phone conversations with him, and i was able to witness it today, personally. >> i think the people of new jersey recognize that he has put his heart and soul into making sure that the people of new jersey bounce back, even stronger than before. >> that was kind of a stunning level of admiration right there. and now with the election just fife days away, the president is back on the trail, making stops in colorado, webcaisconsin, nev. mitt romney also on the road with an appearance this morning in virginia. i'm joined this morning by richard socarides, in the studio with me this morning. sadly far away in miami, republican strategist, ana navarro. good to see you down there. >> good to see you. >> i want to start with the pictures that we saw yesterday of chris christie and barack obama, the president. because they were stunning. what is stunning about them is they are so different than what we've seen. there was a level of bipartisanship there. there was, as i said, a stunning level of administration there. i have a strange question for
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both of you. i'm wondering if you can both give me the thought bubbles. what were these two men thinking politically, as this was going on? richard, you first. >> i mean, i think both governor christie and president obama were probably thinking about what they could do for the people of new jersey. i mean, these guys are in office, because their care about people, both of them. both of them think that government can help people and lift them up. and this is a time to have great tragedy, of great suffering for people, and i'm sure that they were both united in the desire to help and the desire and the belief that government can help people in this situation, which it can. >> ana? >> you know, i agree with richard on this, john. this disaster is just too great for them to be thinking about anything else. i will tell you, the thought bubble, i think, on a lot of other people's heads was, are we seeing things? you know, this would have been an unimaginable image and exchange just a week ago. these guys have been very
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strong, you know, have waged very strong criticisms against each other, just this week, governor christie was scheduled to be all over the country, campaigning and being a very strong surrogate for mitt romney. but, you know, sometimes things happen and sandy is one of those things, that come to remind us all that there are things in life that are more important than politics, more important than partisanship, and that call for unity. even if it is five days before such a close and big presidential election. >> americans really do seem to like what they're seeing when it comes to this level of bipartisanship. abc news/"washington post" poll asked a about the president's job approval rating of how he's handling the disaster right now. 78% say excellent or good. just 8%, not so good or poor. mitt romney, it's not his job to handle this disaster right now. he has just a 44% approval rate. 21% say they disapprove. i know it's not political. i know they may not be doing this for politics, guys, but
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there is an election just five days away. so ana, does this help the president? >> well, i think it certainly doesn't hurt. but it is a double-edged sword. it has taken him off the campaign trail. it also has taken mitt romney off his game a little bit, because he can't be waging strong attacks against president obama while president obama is being president in the middle of this crisis. so it has changed it a little bit. but it's also given president obama a clans to look presidential, be presidential, be not only commander in chief, be comforter in chief, which is a big part of the job description for president. for romney, john, it's a little more difficult, because as you say, he's got no specific responsibilities when it comes to this. and so, he needs to be sympathetic. he needs to be involved. he needs to be concerned. and i think he's doing the right thing by not criticizing president obama, by not criticizing chris christie for this unity, show of unity with
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president obama, and just sticking to campaigning. >> he has to watch one of his top supporters and surrogates, chris christie, gushing over the president. that can't be completely easy, richard. >> well, and you know, what you saw from both these men yesterday is that good government was good politics. it was good politics both for president obama and for governor christie. i mean, governor christie is governor in a state that's overwhelmingly democratic. to have him there with the democratic president, helping people, it worked for both of them. and as ana knows, politicians from both parties have a lot in common. i mean, these guys have a lot in common. they're both, you know, the president is head of the country. the governor is head of a big, important state. they have a lot in common. >> richard socarides, new yorker.com, former adviser to bill clinton, thanks for being here. ana navarro, next time, let's do it in person. thanks, guys. 48 minutes past the hour. every vote counts, especially during this presidential election. so we asked some early voters to
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share their stories. the issues that matter most to them, who they voted for, and why they voted. we are calling them voter graphs. first up, richard moore of orlando, who's supporting president obama, and he said he voted early because he's a poll clerk and cannot vote on election day. his big issues, the economy, taxes, and education as well. and this is mitt romney voter deedee smith. well, she sent us a picture of her adorable little granddaughter, aria. thank you for that. she said she voted early because she wanted to avoid all the long lines. her issue, number one, the economy. >> you can send us your voter graph and picture of your grandkids. the address is cnn.com/earlystart. it's 49 minutes past the hour. still ahead, the victims of sandy, and the sometimes razor-thin margin between life and death. you're watching "early start." a. what?! you've got to be kidding me. [ derek ] i've never seen a road like this. there's jagged rock all the way around.
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52 minutes past the hour. welcome back to "early start." at least 56 people in the united states have died as a result of superstorm sandy, 36 right here in the tristate area. cnn's anderson cooper has a closer look at some of the victims of this massive storm.
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>> reporter: jessie and her close friend jacob were out for what her family says was a quick walk on monday night. they were walking her dog, max. neighbors say an enormous tree suddenly was uprooted by the force of the storm and pinned them both beneath its weight. jessie was the daughter of john cast, the executive director of a new york city advocacy group, new york communities for change. on its website today, jessie was eulogized as an amazing young woman. they was just 24 years old. her dog, max, was hurt by survived. lauren abraham was a makeup artist, also 24. in her queens neighborhood of richmond hill, the storm brought down a power line and it began to spark. the streets were drenched with rain and somehow lauren touched the line, according to police. rescuers were unable to reach her for half an hour. on the flood-ravaged streets of staten island, an off-duty police officer began taking his family to safety from inside his home.
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28-year-old arthur caspershock faced floodwaters racing into his house. according to an official police county, he had taken seven people, including a 15-month-old, from the attic to safety, and was going back in to check the basement. he never came out. his body was recovered 12 hours later. and as those same floodwaters surged through streets, an absolutely horrific event unfolded. according to the "new york daily news," a mother had managed to unstrap her two children, brandon age 2, and connor, age 4, from their car seats as the water hit their suv. police would only confirm to cnn that the two children are missing. the mother's sister told us that the mom knocked on doors for help, but was turned away. but there were hundreds of rescues throughout the storm that led to happier endings. >> ma'am, your feet are going to be right there. go ahead. >> reporter: this little girl was inside an apartment building when the roof blew off. >> what did it sound like?
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>> like it was cracking. >> reporter: wow, very scary. did you have any idea what was happening? >> the fire department came and told us to evacuate because the roof was going to fall and then i -- i started getting scared. and i started hurrying up and packing. >> that was our anderson cooper reporting. and coming up, how you can help those in the heart of the disaster zone.
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thousands of people will wake up on shelter cots this morning. take a look at this. these are scenes from toms river, new jersey. about 9,000 people in 13 states spent tuesday night in red cross shelters. the good news, donations to the red cross are starting to pour
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in. well over $11 million so far. >> and if you would like to help, go to cnn.com/impact. all kinds of information there for you on what you can do to make a difference for all of these people that are in such dire need. >> we encourage you to check it out. that is all for "early start" this morning. i'm john berman. >> and i'm zoraida sambolin. "starting point" with soledad o'brien starts right now. good morning. welcome, everybody. our starting point this morning, recovery. it's been three days since sandy walloped the east coast, killing at least 56 people in the united states. nearly 5 million people remain without power and the temperatures are dropping. parts of the transportation system are back on track now, just before rush hour in new york city. but a gridlocked nightmare is still expected and people could walk for hours, just to get to work. and then there's this. another one of new york's major hospitals is rushing patients out as we speak. the backup generator has failed there. and we're just five days away from the presidential election. the president and mitt r